Sam Horsfield stumbles to third round lead at the Hero Open

Cormac Sharvin is eight shots off the lead ahead of final round in Birmingham

England’s Sam Horsfield during day three of the Hero Open in Birmingham. Photograph: PA

England’s Sam Horsfield during day three of the Hero Open in Birmingham. Photograph: PA

 

Sam Horsfield will take a one-shot lead into the final day of the Hero Open despite a stumbling finish to his third round in Birmingham.

After holding a share of the overnight lead heading into the weekend, the Englishman made five birdies on the front nine to storm into a six-shot lead and looked in total control at Forest of Arden.

But he would make just one gain on the way home, giving up three bogeys and a double to sign for a 71 and a 14 under total that left him one shot ahead of Wales’ Oliver Farr, Denmark’s Rasmus Hojgaard and Finland’s Mikko Korhonen.

Cormac Sharvin was the only Irish player to survive the cut for the weekend and he goes into Sunday’s final round eight shots off the lead. His round of 73 leaves him six under par overall.

Horsfield looked set for a convincing first European Tour win as he produced his stunning display over the first seven holes. But he will now face some stiff competition after his back nine of 40. The 23-year-old was remaining positive following a closing par that kept his nose in front.

“My caddie just said to me coming off the 18th green, ‘if someone would have said to you on Thursday you can have a one shot lead going into Sunday, you would take it’,” he told the European Tour’s website.

“I’ve made it a little bit harder for myself from the position I was in but I’m still looking forward to tomorrow, it’ll be a lot of fun.

“I got off to a good start and then 10, I don’t know what happened there, then I hit a bad drive down 12 and my timing got a little off, I got a little quick and it got stuck behind me. I felt it on a few shots but I’m still in a good position for tomorrow.”

Farr is also searching for a first European Tour win - he’s nine years older than Horsfield - and he was hopeful his three victories on the second-tier Challenge Tour would hold him in good stead after a bogey-free 67.

“It’s a nice position to be in going into a Sunday,” he said. “Played really nicely today, I’m more pleased about that to be honest. I try and treat it as another tournament. I played a lot on the Challenge Tour and have been in contention out there. It’s a bit of a step up being on the European Tour but I’ll try and treat it as another tournament and a position I’ve been in before.”

Korhonen matched Farr with a 67, while 19-year-old Hojgaard went one better with a 66.

Third round scores and totals in the European Tour’s Hero Open (British if not otherwise stated)

202 Sam Horsfield 68 63 71

203 Mikko Korhonen (Fin) 67 69 67, Rasmus Hojgaard (Den) 66 71 66, Oliver Farr 65 71 67

204 Sebastian Garcia Rodriguez (Spa) 62 69 73, Chris Paisley 70 68 66

205 Richard Bland 70 68 67, Joachim B Hansen (Den) 68 71 66, Alexander Bjork (Swe) 68 67 70, Matthieu Pavon (Fra) 69 67 69, Antoine Rozner (Fra) 68 67 70, Thomas Detry (Bel) 67 67 71, Benjamin Hebert (Fra) 69 70 66

206 Joel Sjoholm (Swe) 70 68 68, Robert Rock 71 69 66, Niklas Lemke (Swe) 70 72 64

207 Marcus Armitage 72 68 67, Laurie Canter 67 72 68, Maximilian Kieffer (Ger) 71 69 67

208 Andy Sullivan 70 70 68, Ross Fisher 70 71 67, Jamie Donaldson 72 68 68, Sean Crocker (USA) 67 75 66

209 Joel Stalter (Fra) 67 71 71, Kalle Samooja (Fin) 68 69 72, Callum Shinkwin 68 69 72, Grant Forrest 69 68 72, Ashley Chesters 66 72 71, Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano (Spa) 73 68 68, Pablo Larrazabal (Spa) 64 75 70, Aaron Rai 71 68 70, Renato Paratore (Ita) 70 70 69, Jason Scrivener (Aus) 69 69 71, Miguel Angel Jimenez (Spa) 64 72 73, Louis De Jager (Rsa) 74 66 69

210 Cormac Sharvin (Irl) 70 67 73, Sihwan Kim (Kor) 67 71 72, Rhys Enoch 68 72 70, Ryan Fox (Nzl) 70 72 68, Julien Guerrier (Fra) 68 71 71, Rikard Karlberg (Swe) 68 71 71, Matthew Southgate 67 74 69, Wil Besseling (Ned) 67 70 73, Ricardo Santos (Por) 70 69 71, Alexander Levy (Fra) 67 69 74

211 Richie Ramsay 69 68 74, Dave Coupland 68 72 71, Benjamin Poke (Den) 72 70 69

212 Ben Stow 70 71 71, Thomas Bjorn (Den) 71 71 70, Marcel Schneider (Ger) 73 67 72, Scott Jamieson 71 71 70

213 Steven Brown 71 71 71, Ben Evans 72 70 71, Clement Sordet (Fra) 69 72 72

Richard McEvoy 69 72 72, Johannes Veerman (USA) 75 66 72, Romain Langasque (Fra) 69 72 72, John Catlin (USA) 71 70 72, Lee Slattery 70 71 72

214 Darius Van Driel (Ned) 69 71 74, David Horsey 71 71 72, Garrick Porteous 70 72 72, Carlos Pigem (Spa) 69 69 76, Steven Tiley 72 67 75

215 Soren Kjeldsen (Den) 70 71 74, Maverick Antcliff (Aus) 72 70 73, Michael Campbell (Nzl) 71 71 73

216 Tapio Pulkkanen (Fin) 70 71 75, Connor Syme 67 75 74

217 Dale Whitnell 69 72 76

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